For fans of HBO’s The Gilded Age, explore the dark side of the alluring world of America’s 19th century elite in this gripping series of riveting mysteries…
In Gilded Age New York, heiress Prudence MacKenzie and ex-Pinkerton Geoffrey Hunter investigate crimes that take them from the slums of Five Points in lower Manhattan to the Fifth Avenue mansions of society's elite. In the late nineteenth century, women are particularly vulnerable . . .
Childbirth can be dangerous even for the wealthy. So when opera singer Claire Buchanan shows Prudence and Geoffrey a postmortem cabinet photograph of her deceased twin sister and newborn niece, they express sadness but not surprise. The popular black-bordered portraits are the era's way of coping with the devastating losses that plague every family. What makes this death different is that Claire is convinced Catherine and her child were murdered.
Prudence's friend is haunted by a sense of her sister's lingering presence, and by the conviction that her dead twin is demanding justice. Catherine's widower, Aaron Sorensen, is a cold, controlling man who swiftly remarried. Now his second wife is already pregnant and may be in terrible danger. In order to discover the truth and find evidence of Sorensen's guilt, Geoffrey will delve deep into his past while Prudence casts herself as his next victim—putting her own life at grave risk . . .
Praise for Lies that Comfort and Betray
“Simpson further develops an admirable heroine who refuses to take refuge in the vapors but doesn’t see that she’s met a match in her partner—though neither does he.”
“Fans of Anne Perry will find Prudence a worthy American cousin to Charlotte Pitt.”
In Simpson's suspenseful, atmospheric third Gilded Age mystery (after Lies That Comfort and Betray), New York opera singer Claire Buchanan, whose twin sister, Catherine, died in childbirth eight months earlier, calls on the services of Prudence MacKenzie and her investigative partner, Geoffrey Hunter. Death of both mother and child during birth was not unusual in 1889, but Claire believes that her twin's death was not natural. Catherine's husband, Aaron Sorensen, who inherited her wealth, is an unsuccessful gambler who married another heiress with indecent haste after her death, and his new wife is eight months pregnant. Geoffrey sets out to learn all he can about Aaron's past, while Prudence, fearing that Aaron's second wife and her child are also in danger, formulates a perilous plan to expose the gambler's murder-for-inheritance scheme. Simpson's New York is gritty and dark, and she convincingly portrays the era's fascinating macabre spiritualist beliefs, class and gender stereotypes, and racial prejudices.)